FOUNDATION IN TRAVEL AND TOURISM
Studying at ATTC foundation in travel and tourism you will have 3 different internationally recognized diplomas.
You will be the ideal candidate for a travel agency or airline staff at any position.
Travel agencies range from small independent businesses to large chains. Some specialise in business travel while others have detailed knowledge of specific locations or travel products.
Responsibilities for managers vary depending on the size of the organisation and the customer base, but will usually include:
- sales development;
- staff and financial management;
- daily operational management.
Travel agency managers must be able to offer specialist, professional and competitive travel products to meet the demands of the travel market, which includes online bookings and tailor-made trips.
As the larger travel companies close more of their high street shops to cut costs and focus on online sales, there are possibilites for independents to fill the gap.
Typical work activities
All managers are responsible for developing strategies to hit or exceed sales targets, regardless of the size of the outlet or products offered. Depending on the size of the company and the specific managerial role, tasks could include:
- promoting and marketing the business, sometimes to new or niche markets;
- managing budgets and maintaining statistical/financial records;
- selling travel products and tour packages;
- sourcing products and destinations to meet consumer demands for bespoke travel and sustainable tourism;
- taking part in familiarisation visits to new destinations to gather information on issues and amenities of interest to consumers;
- liaising with travel partners, including airlines and hotels, to manage bookings and schedules, often one year in advance;
- dealing with customer enquiries and aiming to meet their expectations;
- overseeing the smooth, efficient running of the business.
While online bookings have opened up opportunities for home-based self-employment and can reduce the numbers of staff in retail outlets, the majority of managers still deal with staffing issues as a large part of their role.
Tasks concerning the management of travel agency staff typically involve:
- constantly motivating the sales team to hit their targets and ensure company profitability;
- meeting regularly with team leaders to give them sales figures and plan how they approach their work;
- meeting company directors who advise on strategy and finding out about any local issues and future trends;
- overseeing the recruitment, selection and retention of staff as well as payroll matters and staff training;
- organizing incentives, bonus schemes and competitions;
- communicating with sales consultants and providing encouragement, help and advice;
- dealing with disciplinary matters and customer complaints.
Candidates need to show evidence of the following:
- excellent communication skills;
- diplomacy and tact;
- innovation and energy with a desire to drive others;
- commitment to people management;
- sound judgement with attention to detail;
- competent IT skills;
- strong organisational skills;
- resilience to cope with long hours and pressure at peak times;
- a genuine interest in travel.
Relevant management experience in other areas of the leisure or tourism industry, such as hotels or airlines, is likely to increase your chances. Specific functional experience, perhaps in a marketing, sales, retail or IT role, may be advantageous.
Potential managers must be able to demonstrate an awareness of some of the main trends in travel. This incorporates the demand for tailor-made holidays.
There is more industry and consumer awareness of sustainable tourism, including projects which look at the economic and environmental impacts of tourism. Of course, knowledge of popular and upcoming destinations is also important.
Foundation in travel and tourism
- Direct training from GDS trainers
- Flight schedules and availability
- Completing reservations
- Airfare displays
- Hotel and car reservations
- Air transport essentials
- Airline products and services for passengers
- Industry codes, terms and definitions
- Introduction to rail products and services
- Land transport: car rental and campers
- Water transport: ferries and cruises
- Hotel products and services
- Introduction to travel technology
- Pre-packaged tour products
- Types of tours and tour components
- Reservation and accounting procedures
- Booking conditions and limitations of liability
- Customer service and communication
- Fundamentals in airfares and ticketing
- Passenger Air Tariff (PAT)
- Taxes, fees and charges
- Billing and Settlement Plan (BSP)
- Overview of the travel and tourism industry
- International and regional travel and tourism organizations
- Roles and responsibilities of travel agents
- Geography in travel planning
- Marketing and selling travel
- Three-letter city codes
- Planning travel itineraries
- Travel formalities
- Taxes, customs and currencies
- Travel insurance
- Auxiliary services and information supplied by travel agents